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Maryland Natural Resources Police Observes Safe Boating Week
The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) is observing National Safe Boating Week through May 23 to highlight the need for boaters to wear a life jacket at all times while on the water as well as abide by other safety precautions.
“Safe boating saves lives,” said Col. George F. Johnson, NRP Superintendent. “When you boat in Maryland, remember to practice safe and responsible boating, always wear your life jacket, and be alert and aware while on the water.”
On average a dozen people die each year in boating-related incidents on Maryland waterways, most of which could have been prevented had a lifejacket been worn. Last year, Maryland saw an increase in fatalities, from eight in 2006 to ten in 2007, and injuries went from 163 to 208. Records show that the majority of accidents are the result of wake and/or excessive speed, reckless or negligent operation and operator inexperience or inattention.
Nationwide, 3,474 injuries and 710 fatalities resulting from boating-related accidents were reported in 2006. Overall, two-thirds of all fatal boating accident victims drowned. Of those who drowned, 90 percent of the victims were not wearing their life jacket. Eight out of every ten boaters who drowned were using boats less than 20 feet in length.
May 19, 2008
Contact: Sgt. Ken Turner
410-260-8003 office I 443-534-5598 cell
The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) is the enforcement arm of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). With an authorized strength of 280 officers and a dedicated staff of civilian and volunteer personnel, the NRP provide a variety of services in addition to conservation and boating law enforcement duties throughout the State of Maryland. These services include homeland security, search and rescue, emergency medical services, education, information and communications services on a round the clock basis. NRP is the only police force aside from the Maryland State Police that has statewide jurisdiction.
Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 449,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov